Yellow Jackets Are Worse In The San Francisco Bay Area This Time Of Year

Last Modified on October 11, 2021 by Zachary Smith

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It’s hard to think that yellow jackets could get any worse than they already are, but around this time of year, something is happening behind the scenes that makes them more aggressive than usual. As we head towards winter here in San Francisco, yellow jacket colonies are preparing their queens so that they can survive the colder months. This makes them extra protective and more aggressive toward anyone coming near their nests. This, combined with the fact that yellow jackets have had all summer to reproduce and spread, can mean problems.

How To Identify Yellow Jackets

Did you know that all yellow jackets are wasps but not all wasps are yellow jackets? It’s true. What makes yellow jackets unique from other wasps is their distinct yellow and black striped bodies. To identify their nests, look up high for a paper-like ball around the edges of (and sometimes inside) homes, sheds, and garages. If you see a nest or yellow jackets flying about, be very careful. As mentioned, yellow jackets are much more aggressive this time of year and are more likely to sting if you get too close to their home.

How To Make Your Yard Less Attractive To Yellow Jackets

Yellow jackets build their nests in areas where they can easily hunt for or gather food. They build their nests where insect activity is high, and sweets are plentiful. This being said, here are some ways you can make your yard less attractive to these stinging pests.

  • Make sure your trash cans are tightly sealed.
  • If you feed your pets outside, pick up their food and water bowls immediately after they are done with them.
  • Pick up overripe fruit in your yard as it falls off trees.
  • If you compost, make sure your composting fruits and vegetable remnants are at least 3 inches deep within the heap.
  • Use lids on cups when drinking outside.
  • Pick up food and drinks left behind after outdoor cookouts.

What To Do If You Find A Nest On Your Property

Are you seeing yellow jackets buzzing around on your San Francisco Bay Area property? There might be a nest nearby. To find out for sure if your property has an active nest, reach out to the professionals here at Smith’s Pest Management. We will thoroughly inspect your property for yellow jackets and remove any nests we find.

Do you have questions on how we deal with wasps, or are you looking for help with another pest? Give us a call. One of our service representatives would be happy to walk you through your options.

Author Bio: Zach Smith

Landscape Pro Turned Gopher Pro: Owner, Zach Smith, graduate of Cal Poly’s Horticulture program worked nine years as a landscape professional- dealing with gophers, moles, and ground squirrels and was quickly recruited by other local gardeners. Fast forward to the past 15+ years, where Zach and his team trap and remove burrowing pests from residential, municipal and commercial properties throughout the San Francisco Bay area, from Marin to Monterey.